Interviewing Emily VanCamp- Sharon Carter/Agent 13 Captain America: Civil War

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

 

Last month when I was in Los Angeles for the Captain America: Civil War premiere I had the opportunity to interview Emily VanCamp with 24 other bloggers. She was all smiles when she walked into the room filled with women and her happiness was infectious. She was so beautiful in person and absolutely sweet as can be. Here’s what we learned….

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

How do you feel knowing she’s going down in history as Agent 13? 

It’s really cool. Being a part of this universe is really a special thing especially with the movies that they’re making and how good they are. I’m really happy to do it with the people I’m doing it with because everyone’s great and super talented. These movies could have been very sort of surface level but what I love about Marvel is how they delve into the characters. They sort of give us the freedom as well to create a version of the character that hopefully the fans will like and it’s a really fun process. So the fact that people love the movies is like an extra bonus.

Curious what Superhero Emily looked up to as a child? This is what she had to say:

I was trying to think of like a superhero that I looked up to and I was obsessed with the Ninja Turtles, I’m not gonna lie. I was one like four years in a row for Halloween and I was trying to figure out do they count as superheroes. I don’t know but that was my thing. They inspired some of these characters I really like to play.

Not April?    

I wanted to be the Ninja Turtle. I think I was like Donatello one year and then like Michelangelo like three years because I love pizza, I don’t know.

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

What of you went into the character?

What I love about Sharon is her moral compass. I think she has a really strong moral compass and I think that’s what her and Steven initially sort of identify with each other and ultimately in the comic books it led to a very complicated relationship but there’s gotta be something that brings them together as well as their love of Peggy. I think there’s an initial trust there that maybe he doesn’t have with anyone else and maybe she doesn’t have with anyone else. So I really enjoyed that but in terms of what I identify with I love a girl with a strong moral compass and a lot of integrity. I think she really has that and I think you see her struggle with that within this film because she’s battling her work and her loyalty to her work. Cap rebels against that and it’s like is she gonna follow her head and her heart. Ultimately see what she does but I think people can relate to that struggle.

Emily kicked some serious butt in Captain America: Civil War so we asked her to tell us a little about her training and this is what she told us:

It’s just a lot of working out really. I mean I had already sort of done some training for Revenge so it was like an easier segue into the films but you wanna go into these movies feeling really strong and feeling fit. I wanna be able to keep up really. We were wrapping Revenge while I started training for the movie which is very interesting and I kind of realized how much I should have done that for Revenge. I mean I was fit doing Revenge but I was like this is another level. I’m just not really good going into it it’s fun. I love that stuff. I was a dancer so all that physical activity’s great and sort of helps with the sequences and stuff because ultimately it’s choreography. I hope to get to do more of it.

Photo Credit- Marvel

Photo Credit- Marvel

Who does Emily think would win on a battle between Emily Thorne (Revenge) and Sharon Carter?

Someone asked me who would win in a battle the other day. And I was really thinking about it because I think Sharon’s incredibly technical and has this very serious real training. It’s not like some sensei that she had in Japan but I think Emily would win because she’s so tortured. She’s just fueled by so much anger so I kind of feel like when she unleashes the rage…I think it would be a really close fight. I think it would be a close fight but Sharon might just be missing a little bit of an edge.

Was there any scene that was particularly difficult for you?

I wouldn’t say difficult. I think in these movies you just don’t want to screw it up.  Everyone’s bringing their A game. It’s very rare that you go into a movie almost already knowing it’s going to be great and successful because historically they’ve been so successful. So you want to bring your A game and you want to show up. I was in Winter’s Soldier but not very much so it was a little intimidating. There’s that nervous factor before you go into it but everyone’s so kind and generous and the Russo Brothers have always made me feel so comfortable. So I wouldn’t say difficult. I just think you just want to do the best job you can.

Agent 13 and Captain America

Photo Credit- Marvel

And then our attention turned to THE KISS:

It’s kind of refreshing to see Captain in a more intimate situation and they have chemistry. It was there even in The Winter’s Soldier I would say so it’s kind of nice to see it finally happen.
Want to know more about THE KISS? Make sure to see Captain America: Civil War this weekend!

agent 13 pop

It was so cute to see Emily looking at her Agent 13 Pop figure. Here’s what she had to say about how it feels to have a pop figure?

I was just noticing this. I never actually saw it out of the box. It’s hilarious. I think she’s pretty cool. It’s awesome. I gotta get one for my mom. That’s really cool.

How does Emily feel about being a role model for girls?

In these movies I think especially in like anything you do I always hate it when I hear actors or musicians or people in the public eye say that they have no obligation to be any sort of role model. It’s not like you have an obligation but you have a choice and why wouldn’t you choose to empower young women and use yourself as a vehicle when you have a voice to, to kind of inspire that. I don’t see why you wouldn’t. That’s not to say I’m always going to play this kind of character. It’s amazing to play a kickass girl like Sharon or a really tortured version of a woman when I played Emily Thorn. I just did a film called The Girl in the Book which is much more sort of rooted in reality and much more real. I also think she in her own way is strong and on her own adventures so it’s just I don’t know I tend to pick characters that have those elements to it. But I guess in terms of being a role model it’s not a responsibility but it’s something that I feel connected to. I have three sisters. I have wonderful women in my life and I just want to see girls have the best opportunities they possibly can and if I can inspire that in the tiniest way I don’t see why I wouldn’t.

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

civil war posterCaptain America: Civil War opens in theaters this week on May 6th!!!

Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War” finds Steve Rogers leading the newly formed team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. But after another incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability, headed by a governing body to oversee and direct the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers, resulting in twocamps—one led by Steve Rogers and his desire for the Avengers to remain free to defend humanity without government interference, and the other following Tony Stark’s surprising decision to support government oversight and accountability. Opens May 6th.

Check your local theater listings because you might even be able to see a showing on May 5th in the evening. I’m so excited because I already bought tickets to see it with my family Thursday night!
Here’s a sneak peek to hold you over until you can see it in theaters:

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Do You Need Life Insurance…Really?

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You might have read all about life insurance. You may have had others tell you all about it. Some will tell you it’s something you must have. Others will say it’s not so important. So who do you listen to? What’s right for you? Read on to work out whether you really need life insurance:

You Are The Main Breadwinner

If you are the main breadwinner in your family, then getting life insurance is recommended. Your family depend on you and your income to support them. Life will be difficult without you there, so the last thing you want is to make it even harder on them.

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You Have A Dangerous Job/Hobby

Having dangerous jobs and hobbies make it more likely you could seriously hurt yourself as you go about your business. You will want to make sure you’re covered for anything that could happen. That being said, even people who don’t have dangerous jobs and hobbies could use life insurance. Considering the risks you’re regularly taking should help you to figure out if it’s right for you. How likely is it that you will hurt yourself? If you’re in a dangerous profession that involves working with chemicals, or you like to go free rock climbing regularly, life insurance is pretty vital. In many dangerous professions life insurance will be a perk, but this isn’t always the case.

You Have A Big Family

Having a big family can be expensive, and you likely contribute a lot to keep everything running smoothly. Your income probably makes a huge difference to your family and the way they live their lives. If you’d prefer they continue to live that way after you’re gone, life insurance is a must. There are different kinds of life insurance, so the kind you get will depend on your circumstances at the moment. Term life insurance is one option people commonly go for.

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You Have A Mortgage

If you have a mortgage and don’t want to leave your other half with all of the payments when you’re gone, life insurance will sort all of that out. If you don’t start thinking about what your family will do if anything should happen to you, you could leave a mess in your wake.

Whether you need life insurance or not comes largely down to your circumstances and what you think you want to happen when you’re gone. If you have a family and want to make things easier on them, allowing them to enjoy the same lifestyle they are used to, then you should get life insurance. If you want to make sure you’re not leaving everybody in the lurch when it comes to bills, the mortgage, and even your funeral, life insurance can help with that too. Life insurance is never compulsory. If your partner makes a large income of their own then this might be something you never consider, as it just isn’t necessary. Even if they do make a large income, life insurance can be useful. The sooner you get it, the cheaper your premiums will be too. It’s definitely worth thinking about if you want to have peace of mind in this lifetime.

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Helpful Plumbing Tips For Homeowners

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If you’re a homeowner, knowing some helpful plumbing tips can stop you from needing to call somebody out each time you experience a problem. Problems will happen from time to time: that’s just the nature of owning a home. These tips should help you:

 

Flush The Toilet With A Bucket Of Water

You might have been lucky enough never to experience a toilet that just won’t flush. How embarrassing it could be if you just picture the various situations it could leave you in. Don’t panic! You don’t need to call a professional and have them see everything you may have left in the toilet bowl. You can simply flush your toilet with a big bucket of water. It’ll have the same effect as a flush, so you can get it fixed and avoid embarrassment. Bear in mind that the bowl won’t fill up again afterwards, but at least you’ll have a clean toilet. It’s a good idea to have a couple of buckets on hand if your toilet ever stops working.

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Insulate Your Pipes

Insulating your pipes isn’t as difficult as it might seem. Foam tubing can help to protect your pipes, and insulation tape can be used on different gaps. All you have to do is read the manufacturer’s instructions properly before you use anything to make sure it’s the right type.

Unblocking The Sink

A blocked sink is an extremely common problem, especially if you have a garbage disposal that can mean things like vegetables get stuck. Before you give unclogging the sink a go, make sure you turn the disposal off. Remember that you should never, ever put your hand into the disposal. You could end up in serious pain and end up in the emergency room! Instead, use a long handled spoon or a similar tool to unlock your sink. You can then run the hot water for a minute or two and check to see if your efforts have worked. If you don’t have a disposal, plunging can help you to get rid of your clog. If you still haven’t fixed the problem, make sure you call a professional plumber. In the future, remember to avoid pouring grease down the sink. Avoid putting stringy foods such as meat and celery in the garbage disposal too.

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Leaking Pipes

When you have a leaking pipe, you must turn off the water supply to the pipe. Small drips and leaks can be stopped temporarily until a plumber can get to you, but anything more serious should be fixed immediately be a professional. You can use a sheet of rubber to stop the dripping while you wait. The majority of leaks must be fixed by a professional, so don’t do it yourself if you are unsure of what to do. Make sure you remove valuables from the area, so you don’t have to pay to replace those either.

 

Hopefully these tips have helped you and you now know what to do if you come up against a problem with your plumbing. Thanks for reading.

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The Real O’Neals “The Real Retreat” #TheRealONeals

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

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Noah Galvin, Jay R. Ferguson, Matt Shively, Mary Hollis Inboden, and Executive Producers Casey Johnson, David Windsor & Stacy Traub Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

The Real O’Neals- “The Real Retreat” airs Tuesday May 3rd (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network

Tonight’s episode of The Real O’Neals is another funny one, probably because they’re all hysterical. We had the opportunity to screen it a few weeks ago when we were in Los Angeles for the #CaptainAmericaEvent and the #ABCTVEvent as well as interview The Real O’Neals Executive Producers Casey Johnson (@trocaseyjohnson), David Windsor (@dwindsor789) & Stacy Traub (@stoocytroob). You can read the first part of our The Real O’Neals cast interviews here.

Here’s a little synopsis of the episode:

When Jimmy is unexpectedly named Faith Leader for the weekend at the Catholic Youth Retreat, a jealous Kenny decides to take on his older brother’s role as ring leader of the bad kids. Home alone without the kids, Pat invites a new lady friend over, and Eileen can’t help but enlist Jodi to spy on them, with surprising results.

NOAH GALVIN, BEBE WOOD, MATT SHIVELY (ABC/Kevin Estrada)

NOAH GALVIN, BEBE WOOD, MATT SHIVELY (ABC/Kevin Estrada)

All 3 kids attend a Catholic Youth Retreat in this episode but have very different experiences.

 NOAH GALVIN (ABC/Kevin Estrada)

NOAH GALVIN (ABC/Kevin Estrada)

Kenny enjoys being the rebel while Jimmy takes on the role of Faith Leader.

MARTHA PLIMPTON, JAMIE DENBO, JAY R. FERGUSON, MARY HOLLIS INBODEN (ABC/Adam Taylor)

MARTHA PLIMPTON, JAMIE DENBO, JAY R. FERGUSON, MARY HOLLIS INBODEN (ABC/Adam Taylor)

Pat and Eileen fight over their new friend which includes a funny karaoke sing-off. I LOVED THIS PART! I dare you not to sing along!

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Executive Producers Casey Johnson, David Windsor & Stacy Traub Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

We had the opportunity to chat with the Executive Producers Casey Johnson, David Windsor & Stacy Traub and here are some things we learned:

Originally the idea came was based on Dan Savage’s life

The original spark of the idea was based on Dan Savage’s life-  Jacob’s Ladder and Savage Love.  So he grew up in Chicago in an Irish Catholic family and was gay so we took that idea and expanded it into this show.  And then started folding in all of our experiences.We had an amazing staff of writers, a lot of whom were gay. We just wanted to make an impact. We wanted to be as authentic as we could, so we were very careful at putting that stuff together.There are many things- Stacy was divorced, David grew up with two gay dads. So this issue has always been really important to him and to us.  We kind of fold in our own personal experience. ~Casey Johnson

Most of the feedback the show has received has been positive-

We feel like most of the negative has been from people who haven’t really watched the show but just know what it’s about or have gone in wanting to hate it.  But if you believe tweets, which I do and I’ve been watching the live tweeting every week, the response has been so positive and lovely. Kids seeing themselves in the Kenny character, Moms seeing themselves like oh I had that. I think a lot of moms have like a daughter like Shannon. That smart girl and I know I had that.  So they’ll respond ‘oh  man I just had a conversation like that with my daughter’ and I’ll be like yeah me too.  I feel like people who are open minded and like willing to see it for what it is have been really enjoying it. ~Stacey Traub

They are winning over even the skeptics.

There’s been a lot of people on Twitter especially, saying I wasn’t I wasn’t excited about the show but I recognized someone in my family.  Or that’s me.  Or it’s making me laugh. It’s been happening more and more. ~David Windsor

There was a review just last week where the guy said, “I went into this skeptical, with skepticism, but after watching a couple episodes, I fell for it.”  I think we did have to win a few people over. We’ve also gotten some tweets from some kids who have said I’ve just watched the show and decided to come out to my parents.  Which is really gratifying for us, because that was kind of beyond what we saw as the opportunity for story and comedy. We thought this is a show that could help some people.  Anything kids that aren’t that far along or aren’t in a safe place where they can do that, at least watching the show I think will help them feel like I’m not alone, you know, I recognize myself in that character. And that’s been so gratifying for us to feel like we’re giving people that. ~Casey Johnson

Also there was a show a few years ago called The McCarthy’s where they also were Irish and the lead was gay and it was about their family. And I think they were like oh it’s just that show again.  So some people went in a little skewed. We had certain people that were Catholic and told us that they came to it a little bit wary but then once they saw it, were laughing because they saw themselves in the characters or the priest reminded them of their priest or things like that.  So it’s been positive, you know. ~Stacey Traub

The characters and Catholic family portrayed in the show are relatable and not polarizing.

I also really love the Jimmy character. There’s been lots of tweets like ‘I wish I had a brother like that’- underneath it they are difficult subjects, but underneath this his family loves each other, supports each other, and in every episode that’s reinforced.That’s also great, I think for people to see. It’s difficult, it’s not easy but in the end we support each other.  ~Casey Johnson

I’m Jewish and I relate,  a controlling mother is a controlling mother, it doesn’t matter what religion you are.  So what I think is interesting about them being Catholic is it does make it more difficult, what’s happening to all of them. My daughter who’s eleven loves the show, she’s not a boy, you know, maybe she’s gay, I don’t know.  But I think kids can also watch this show and see themselves in this character because he’s just a kid who’s trying to figure himself out, figure out who he is in the world.  So I think the specificity actually makes it universal. Its what gives it the comedy but I think everyone- any big family or anyone with that kind of mom can see themselves.  So no it’s not polarizing. ~Stacey Traub

Make sure to catch up on The Real O’Neals on ABC and watch new episodes Tuesdays at 8:30 EST on ABC.

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10 Things I Learned From Paul Bettany- Vision Captain America: Civil War

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Last month while in LA for the Captain America: Civil War event we had the pleasure of interviewing Paul Bettany who plays Vision. He was quite charming and I could have listened to his British accent all day. He sat down and joking around our interview started like this….

“Excellent.  Marvelous.  Thank you very much.  What can I do for you all?  Probably wondering why I brought you all here?”

SUCH A KIDDER! So here are 10 things we learned from Paul Bettany:

1. Can you tell us about the makeup process and the struggles with that?

Yeah, it was hot.  You all come out of your air-conditioned trailers in your costume and makeup and everybody’s looking rather like super heroes and movie stars.  And then 5 minutes later in 105 [degree] Atlanta weather, you look a lot less like a movie star.  Both me and Chadwick have this special suit that goes on underneath.  Which pumps ice cold water through it.  Yes it is nice. If you can imagine, close your eyes and imagine being inside a gin and tonic.  It feels exactly like that.

2. How much of it was like costume and make up?  And how much of it was CGI?

It’s mostly costume and makeup.  And then there’s some sort of circuitry, I don’t know how to describe it.  They’re lines — basically, the makeup starts from under my eyes and goes all the way under the bald cap.  What the CG does is continue the lines and circuitry into my eyes so they weren’t contacts. They stopped short of that.

3. How many hours did it take for you for full costume, full make up to be ready?

Two and a quarter hours initially. It was somewhere between an hour and a half and 2 hours when everybody’s rusty and they’re starting off again.  Then they quickly get it down to about an hour.  Which is frankly amazing for the transformation that they achieve.  And then the costume is about 45 minutes.  So, you really have to plan how you’re hydrating yourself because that’s a 45 minute reset when you [need to take off the costume].

Photo Credit- Marvel

Photo Credit- Marvel

4. How do you personally relate to Vision?

I have to relate to him as a human being, because I am.  And I’ve never met a synthetic person.  Although, in Los Angeles I question whether I have a lot.  It’s funny.  I imagine a child.  A clever child who can do anything almost and is forced into a situation of having to grow up very quickly.  Hasn’t happened to me yet, personally.  But, that’s how I do.

5. We asked Paul if he could put to rest any rumors about playing Bond and he very coyly replied:

It’s an impossible question.  It’s very flattering. Talking about it really dismantles your ability to negotiate.  Were such a negation gonna take place. I don’t known of one.  So, I can’t confirm or deny.

6. You’re a director now yourself.  Is it different being on the other end?

Yeah and I think more actors should do it.  It really gives you much more of a respect for the directors that you work with.  And I really enjoyed my own period of being an actor and just enjoying my responsibility [as an actor] because you’re obviously taking care of a much larger picture as the director. And your day is just filled with a thousand questions.  99% of which are what color do you want the red shoes to be?  What? And then 1% of them being absolutely are one of the questions that are gonna make you old.  It’s been amazing.  And I loved doing it.  And will do it again.  I’ll do a comedy next time.

Vision (Paul Bettany) Photo Credit: Film Frame © Marvel 2016

Vision (Paul Bettany)
Photo Credit: Film Frame
© Marvel 2016

7. You were the voice of Jarvis and now Tony Stark has a new voice in his head.  Do you feel betrayed that it’s a woman?

That’s a loaded question.  I don’t feel betrayed that it’s a woman at all. I definitely feel melancholic at times.  I don’t go, “oh, where’s my Jarvis?”

8. I read that you hadn’t watched the Iron Man movies in the beginning.  Have you watched them now?

When you work you enter an interview with a journalist where they ask you, have you seen the movies?  And you say, “oh no, I haven’t seen the movies”.  And then you go on to say, but then I don’t really see 80% of the movies that I’m in.  But they don’t use that bit because it’s a much more eye catching headline “Bettany doesn’t watch the Iron Man movies”.  So, no, I did my homework and I watched them all.  And I really loved them.  I think that the stories are becoming more and more rich and complex and I think you see that in this movie.  That both in terms of the interpersonal relationships between all of the super heroes and also broader, often these sorts of movies are just plain escapism. Actually this movie talks about some of the things that we sometimes want to escape from.  You know, like, unilateral intervention from a super power is really what on one level, this film talks about.  And the need for a strong regulatory body.  And that’s pretty topical stuff.  Which is amazing for a movie that’s this broad and this much of a popular movie and this much of a popular franchise. I think to touch on those sort of subjects is kind of great.

9. What was it like being his voice for all those movies and then finally becoming a character?

Well, I just love it.  I mean, it’s a double-edged sword, of course because I used to show up for 45 minutes, talk a bit and they’d give me a big bag of cash.  Now I gotta got to Atlanta and wear spanks.  But no.  It’s been so much fun. I loved doing it and I look forward to it when the date is set for the next one. You meet a bunch of people that you know and it’s like coming back to a family.  It’s lovely.

10. How do your kids feel about having a superhero in the house now?

They love it actually.  My daughter met me as the Vision for the first time and I think she was just three.  Or maybe just even about to turn three.  And she just ran up to me and gave me a hug.  She knew entirely who it was. I was very worried about what her response would be.  Then at the end of the day when I took it all off she had her first ever meltdown.  She said, “I want purple daddy!” Which, as I’m sure you can all imagine was a little depressing.

Paul Bettany

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Captain America: Civil War opens in theaters this week on May 6th!!!

Check your local theater listings because you might even be able to see a showing on May 5th in the evening. I’m so excited because I already bought tickets to see it with my family Thursday night!
Here’s a sneak peek to hold you over until you can see it in theaters:

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100 Years of Hats: Girls vs. Guys

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This is so much fun! Which is your favorite style?
100 Years of Hats: Girls vs. Guys

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Prepping For The Big Move – From Apartment To First Home

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Any move is a big deal. But there’s one kind that most will agree takes a new level of preparation. A lot of city dwellers are used to hopping from apartment to apartment. They might be surprised when they find that moving into a house of their own takes a good deal more work. But that work doesn’t have to become a stressful nightmare. With the right preparation, you can get things a lot more smoothly. The following guide is going to give you some ideas of how to prepare for the move and what you can expect from moving day and beyond.

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Prepare early

Moves are a huge hassle. The way to stop that hassle becoming all too much for you is by taking the initiative. You should be preparing things weeks before the move. This starts with getting things like electric bills and the like set up at the new home and changing your address. Starting to donate what you don’t plan on taking and packing what you don’t need right now. You can get in contact to deduct moving costs from your taxes in some places. The earlier you prepare, the less of a nightmare moving day is going to be.

Leave on good terms

One way to stop yourself from getting a nightmare is by respecting the property you’ve been living in and your landlord. Even if you’re not on the best of terms, you want as much of your deposit back as possible. Between your preparation and moving day, start to go over the apartment and clean as best you can. If you’ve done any damage, now’s the time to fix it with a little DIY. It’s recommended you move a little before your moving day. That way you can come back and finish leaving it spotless once your stuff’s gone.

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Moving day

Now it’s time for the day of the move itself. First thing’s first. Whether you’re getting friends to help you or using moving companies, have things packed up by the time they get there. Otherwise you’ll slow the process down and put the pressure on yourself. Coordinate with whoever’s doing the moving by putting color coded post-its on the boxes. That way you can tell them where they have to go without being asked and taking the time to think about it. Keep things that are being moved closest to the door for convenience, too.

Fixing it up

Moving into your own home is great. But when you get there, don’t find yourself surprised by small or even big problems. Every owned home that isn’t brand new will have history and flaws. They don’t have a landlord that’s been tending to them for new tenants, after all. Understand that this is your property and no-one else’s responsibility. Get prepared for DIY. Getting a new house up to your standards might be a lot of work. But at the end of the day, you’ll be a lot more satisfied that you’ve worked for something you actually own.

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Six Things I Learned About Jeremy Renner- Hawkeye & Elizabeth Olsen- Scarlet Witch Captain America: Civil War

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

Photo Credit- Marvel

Photo Credit- Marvel

A few weeks ago when I was in Los Angeles as part of the Captain America Event, 24 other bloggers and I had the opportunity to interview Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) and Elizabeth Olsen (Scarlet Witch) about their roles in the new movie, Captain America: Civil War which will be in theaters May 6th, 2016. On a side note, the movie was AMAZING. I’ll be posting my review soon so keep an eye out for it. I loved it so much I already bought tickets to see it with my family at an early screening on May 5th. I can’t wait!!! So here’s what we learned from Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen.

 Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

In the comics, your character is mostly deaf.  How would feel about them introducing that into the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

“I keep hearing about that. It isn’t really played out at this point and not unless we say he’s got an amazing hearing aid or something.” -Jeremy Renner

“Or maybe you get into explosion.” -Elizabeth Olsen

“We were focused much more on the alternate sort version of not the big purple mask sort of guy, you know.  He’s more of the utility sort of guy.  So yeah they talked about that, but I don’t think it’s gonna play anytime.” –Jeremy Renner

“Well, I don’t know.  You could always be blown up somewhere and…”-Elizabeth Olsen

“What? What?” –Jeremy Renner (acting like he can’t hear Elizabeth)

hawkeyeYou reprised your role as Hawkeye for this movie.  Did you need to do any extra training for the bow?  Do you bow hunt?

“I don’t. I didn’t do any extra training. Every time there is a different sort of setup with the bow and what’s happening with the tech stuff.  On this one, the quiver’s different.  Sometimes they could snap out and they put a different tip on the bottom.  This one I really do a full extension. It’s the same gear- different tips.”–Jeremy Renner

nullSo there is a lot of action; there’s a lot of humor in the movie.  Did you guys have improv or was that just something they wrote in?

“The Russo brothers were great.  They’d always have alt lines for certain things and these sort of one-liners, and then they just let you kind of run with a bunch of different things. So I have no idea what makes the cut. You still do alt lines. They just want to have options for tone and then pace and that sort of thing.  That was probably the most fun part of the job- improvising- that was fun.”  –Jeremy Renner

 Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Could you guys tell us a little bit about your stunts and how much was you, and how much was, you know, the stuntmen?

“I think we do as many stunts as we can. A lot of times they take a second crew [stunt doubles] out when we’ve already been wrapped from the movie, when they’re in Germany, and they might do stuff then.  But when we’re there, we do everything. I need to get better at wirework, I think, for the next one. And flying.” – Elizabeth Olsen

“It’s almost just practical stuff.  I don’t do the CGI stuff. It happens outside the arrows. I fire an arrow because it’s gotta go somewhere, right?  [LAUGHS] You know, into the cameraman.  [AUDIENCE LAUGHS] But I’ll do ninety-nine percent of the script. This is fun- if I couldn’t, then this would be a boring job. There’s one flip I couldn’t do it, so my stunt double did.”–Jeremy Renner

scarlet witchWhat inspired to do the role of the Scarlet Witch?

“A few things.  I was already a fan of Ironman and Avengers. Then I started reading more about Scarlet Witch’s journey, and I found the fact that her mind is the only thing that limits her and the ever possibility of this kind of insanity and being able to manipulate reality- that it even throws- that she can manipulate her own reality, those kinds of things, to me, really cool. I didn’t know when they would come into play or if they will, and I still hope we play around more with that part of her.  But I just think she’s a really cool character and it’s a lot of opportunity for storytelling.” – Elizabeth Olsen

nullWas ever any real-life tension between the actors?

“No, it’s a lot of laughing. There’s a lot of jokes and a lot of inappropriate humor. Yeah, everyone’s got a good attitude about it when we’re doing. I mean Paul Bettany who is in such an uncomfortable costume and he’s sweating through these prosthetics, and he can’t take them off, and he’s so miserable, and he is still one of the funniest people on set.  I think everyone just has a good attitude.  If we complain, we complain and laugh about it and move on because you can’t complain about it.  It’s a really awesome job.  And I think we all recognize that.”- Elizabeth Olsen

 Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Captain America: Civil War opens in theaters May 6th

Check your local theater listings because you might even be able to see a showing on May 5th in the evening. I’m so excited because I already bought tickets to see it with my family next Thursday night!
Here’s a sneak peek to hold you over until you can see it in theaters:

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Peeking in the Closet: Behind the Scenes of ABC’s The Catch

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

THE CATCH - ABC's "The Catch" stars Elvy Yost as Sophie, Jay Hayden as Danny, Rose Rollins as Valerie, Peter Krause as Benjamin, Mireille Enos as Alice, Jackie Ido as Jules, Alimi Ballard as Reggie and Sonya Walger as Margot. (ABC/Craig Sjodin)

THE CATCH – ABC’s “The Catch” stars Elvy Yost as Sophie, Jay Hayden as Danny, Rose Rollins as Valerie, Peter Krause as Benjamin, Mireille Enos as Alice, Jackie Ido as Jules, Alimi Ballard as Reggie and Sonya Walger as Margot. (ABC/Craig Sjodin)

The Catch is one of my favorite shows this season so I was beyond excited when I was invited to Los Angeles with 24 other bloggers to tour the set and meet Costume Designer Peggy Schnitzer(@anitaoctober). If you haven’t seen The Catch you’re missing out. But don’t worry, you can CATCH it on ABC.com. It is deliciously addictive with its exciting game of cat and mouse and a perfect addition to ABC’s Thursday night TGIT lineup at 10 PM EST.

The Catch Group Picture

Photo Credit- Coralie Seright from Lovebugs and Postcards

Wondering what the show is about? Check it out:

Alice Vaughan (Mireille Enos) is LA’s top private investigator — and the one woman you don’t want to mess with.  But when her fiancé, Benjamin Jones (Peter Krause), cons her out of millions and disappears, Alice goes on a private mission for payback.  No matter where it leads or the secrets she must keep along the way, Alice will stop at nothing to catch her man.

Anderson/Vaughan Investigations is one of the leading private investigation and security firms in the country and was built from the ground up by Alice and her best friend and business partner, Valerie Anderson (Rose Rollins). Their elite team of private investigators includes associates Danny Yoon (Jay Hayden), whose mischievous and irreverent nature allows them to break the law when necessary to solve a case, and their newest member, Sophie Novak (Elvy Yost), who serves as their in-house counsel and brilliant hacker. While their firm continues to investigate some of the most elaborate crimes around the world, Alice is on a personal mission to beat her former fiancé at his own game. However, she is not the only one chasing Ben. FBI Agent Jules Dao (Jacky Ido) has been following his criminal activity across Europe and now is closer than ever to capturing him. Agent Dao hopes to elicit Alice’s help in taking Ben and his team down. Meanwhile, the elusive Ben has slipped back into the dangerous and sexy world of international crime. Alongside his long-time partners, mastermind Margot Bishop (Sonya Walker) and Reggie Lennox (Alimi Ballard), they stealthily move from con to con, targeting only high-end jobs with multi-million dollar payouts. With stakes this high, you can’t make one misstep; but Ben does exactly that when this world-class conman gets too close to his mark, Alice. Undeniably drawn to one another, both Alice and Ben are playing with fire, and as Alice continues to hunt him down, it quickly becomes an intoxicating game of cat and mouse.

12063339_10107968048538674_978075108762470273_nMireille Enos (as Alice Vaughan) and Peter Krause (as Benjamin Jones) have such great chemistry together. I know they shouldn’t be together and yet I secretly hope they end up with each other. And I just have to mention how much I LOVE Mireille’s voice. It is so velvety and seductive. I love how there are several stories going on at one time in each episode. Of course you have the ongoing story of the cat and mouse chase between Alice and Benjamin but you also have the story lines of the various cases that Alice and her team are working on. I just can’t say enough good things about this show. I’m hooked!

clothesWhen we arrived in the wardrobe area of The Catch the first thing I saw was LOTS and LOTS of beautiful clothes. I am fashion challenged but I loved seeing all of the gorgeous dresses, jackets, outfits, and accessories that were in the room.The racks were arranged by character and separated by male actors and female actresses. Plus the costume design department has to outfit every extra actor as well so in a crowd scene they might have to outfit a hundred different extras. That’s a lot of clothes! I watched last Thursday night’s episode and there was a large, elegant party scene and I just kept on thinking how many dresses and suits the wardrobe department had to figure out for that scene.

carlos and peggy

Costume Designer Peggy Schnitzer showed us some of the outfits that the cast had already worn on the show and it was exciting to recognize some of the pieces, especially the elegant wedding dress that Alice tried on in the pilot episode. It is a one of a kind dress that was custom made just for the show by the show’s tailor, Carlos Zepeda. You can see Carlos with the dress pictured above and he’s going to be making a cameo appearance in the season finale so keep an eye out for him.

If only this dress was in my size! It was stunning in person and I just had to get a picture to share with my readers.dress

Curious about what goes behind the scenes in getting all of these characters outfitted? Here are some things we learned.

“I wanted her [Mireille ] to be sleek, she has an amazing body.  Strong but feminine.  I’m very lucky because in a lot of shows they don’t let you use a lot of black clothes.  And here they do because their business AVI is all glass and white.  So it’s great to have darker shapes and people going through so you can see them.  We can’t do like a lot of lights and beiges. We do the occasional white dress but then surround it. It depends on what everyone else is wearing.  But usually I try and do it around what Mireille and Rose are wearing, everyone else around them.  Because it’s usually focusing on them in that environment. I think for each character I just sort of look at them and the written word about the character, I follow suit.

And Margot pretty much wears very sculpted body conscious. She’s a little more playful but still professional. I’ve really tried to make it so it’s feminine but professional not too power suit-y for her.

Peter pretty much wears a uniform. Dark suits mostly white shirts, which were all made for him, you can see his little initials in there (Peggy showed us the initials) or dark shirts.  We just thought that sort of was something that you could identify with him. He pretty much is the consistency in the crazy inconsistency of everything else.  [But] when they do cons, they tend to get dressed for different situations.”~Peggy Schnitzer

When you have to pick out the wardrobe before you even have the script for that episode, how do you do that?

“We do what it’s called closets. In the very beginning when you get the character and you get the pilot or the script, you start buying a lot of clothes like in anyone’s closet.  You would get a certain amount of dresses, certain amount of skirts, jeans, things that they would wear while you’re shooting so I don’t have to fit them every week. I don’t always know what’s happening and hopefully the clothes that you buy, you’re spot on and you can use them. Then sometimes things come up [and] I don’t have a dress for that.  What are we going to do?  And then there’s things that we might never use because it just isn’t going to work.

Their daily clothes, a lot of times I like to reuse clothes. I feel like if you reuse things it’s like, oh yeah, she wore that again, which is a good thing. I think it’s realistic. She is a working woman in this with a business and she can look great and fantastic, but once in a while she’s going to have to go back to her closet and wear the same thing. [Regular people don’t] have thirty thousand jackets.”  ~Peggy Schnitzer

20160411_115748One thing that I found really interesting is just how much attention to detail is given to make sure that the show remains consistent in each take so the final product is seamless. They take a picture of each actor in each outfit to document exactly how they wore it- which buttons were buttoned, were the sleeves rolled, what jewelry did they wear, etc. It is also all written down in a binder so they can refer back to it. They document everything so for example if Ben’s shirt is unbuttoned the top 2 buttons, he won’t accidentally have it only unbuttoned one button in the next scene. Or if Alice walks into her office and puts her jacket on her chair, they write that down so in the next scene the jacket will still be on the chair and she doesn’t accidentally have her jacket on again.

envelopeAfter we checked out the wardrobe department we walked over to the set to check out Alice’s house and then her office. Again great care is taken to make sure every detail is perfect. Notice how the envelope above is addressed to Alice Vaughan.
house1

Alice’s whole house had all sorts of props to make it look real, from sunglasses on the kitchen table to makeup on the vanity.house2 Such a beautiful  house! I love how the backdrop makes it look like a real city in the background.house3

Just past the pretty patio set you could see all the production lights and other hardware they use to make the show and you realize it’s a fake balcony. house4I would LOVE to have Alice’s closet. We noticed that there were men’s clothes in it and asked if that was a clue that Ben would be moving back in but alas we were told that they were just using that closet for storage and it wasn’t a clue. A girl can dream, right?

painting

And then there’s the Maria Kreyn painting that was such a big part of the first episode. So pretty! I had to take a picture with it. Can you see how the wall was open where I was standing and you could walk off the set to a back area. Everything looks so real and then you see the opening and realize it’s just a set.office

The Anderson Vaughan Investigations office was bright and beautiful. Again such attention to detail. The folders all said Anderson Vaughan Investigations and Alice’s notepad had her name on it. I hope she doesn’t mind that I borrowed her desk.
alice desk

We also got to meet the lovely Rose Rollins who plays Alice’s partner Valerie Anderson.rose rollins

Tonight’s episode is titled “The Benfactor”. Here’s the synopsis for this episode. I can’t wait to watch!

“The  Benefactor”  —  The  AVI  team  takes  on  a  new  client,  a  female  captain  in  the  army,  who  is  being   harassed  by  her  colleagues.  Meanwhile,  Alice  makes  a  play  on  Ben  that  could  put  her  in  some  very   serious  danger,  and  both  Ben  and  Margot  are  shocked  when  an  old  friend  comes  to  town,  on  “The   Catch,”  THURSDAY,  APRIL  28  (10:00-­‐‑11:00  p.m.  EDT),  on  the  ABC  Television  Network.

Make sure to check out The Catch on ABC Thursdays at 10 PM EST and let me know what you think!

 

 

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TAKE AWAY YOUR STRESS WITH MARTIAL ARTS

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the-stress-1473487

If you’re looking for a new fitness activity to venture into, there is one sport that you should really think about taking up and that is martial arts. Not only is it a great workout and an effective weight loss program, but martial art classes uses many techniques and skills to help individuals reduce stress and lower tension levels.Stress can result from different events in a person’s life; lack of self confidence, bad day a work, financial worries, fears over personal safety, general health concerns, problems at home and maybe a combination of many more factors . Compared to any other sport, psychologists have found when training in a traditional martial art you will notice lower levels of aggression and higher levels of self-esteem and positivity. With the help of efficient martial art training sessions, we can sharpen our decision-making capacities, overcome our fears by dominating the associated aspects, establish true focus, project self-confidence and enhance self-management skills greatly in order to build your coping mechanisms against stress

REMEMBER TO BREATHE
When people tell you to breathe while working out, we often forget that it’s actually important to really breathe, and that means inhaling though your nose and then exhaling through the mouth for about 4 seconds each. This is done through breath counting that is a form of meditation because your stress affects the state of the mind. Breathing brings about a connection with the body and mind, and by performing a simple breathing technique allows you to gain control of it. The body connects to the mind when during inhalation and exhalation; there is a form of energy known as “chi” which is being allowed to complete a path of circulation through your whole body.

KEEP CALM AND FOCUS
Reactions in martial arts entail focus to make immediate alert decisions against an opponent. The techniques you learn will improve the blood flow and oxygen around your body which will create a sense of well being physically and mentally. A calm mind is a key factor to manage stress, and learning to control your thoughts when planning your next move in a fight requires 100% focus.

ELIMINATE FEAR
The sense of empowerment driven from starting your first class, to mastering a technique and the possibility of becoming a strong competitor builds self confidence.Martial art training is considered as one of the most effective ways for boosting our confidence level and self-esteem, which means eliminating all fear and anxiety as you learn how to take action sensibly. Over time with endurance and regular practices, you will be able to achieve better posture as well as stronger movements.

THE BOTTOM LINE
Stress can come big or small but it doesn’t have to take over your life, and we shouldn’t have to live our lives worrying all the time. There are ways that we can manage this and taking up martial arts can be one of them. To get a better understanding of the many different fight styles, and interact with masters from all over the world, Martial Arts Social Network Website has it all. Taking a class has never been so east because you can also even practice from the comfort of your own home.

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